Using the HOSTS file: A beginners pointer - MysteryFCM
The HOSTS file is a standard file within Windows that is accessed by Windows before the browser loads the website you have requested. This file does not have an extension (it is simply named "HOSTS") is typically hidden by Windows to prevent users deleting it. The location of this file will depend on the version of Windows you are running.
For a Windows 9x/ME machine, this file is stored in;
For NT systems and above, this file is stored in;
NB: %windir% is the system variable for the Windows folder. This is typically either "Windows" or "WinNT".
Editing the HOSTS file manually
To edit the HOSTS file manually, click Start > Run. Then enter the following;
For Windows 9x/ME users;
For NT, 2000, XP, Server 2003 users;
NB: %systemroot% is the system variable for the Windows folder on NT and above systems.
IMPORTANT: As the HOSTS file does not have an extension, you must ensure you DO NOT save it with one!!
Third party applications
For those less inclined to edit the HOSTS file manually, the following are excellent FREEWARE programs that allow you to do this.
Hosts file manager: http://mvps.org/PracticallyNerded/Software.htm
To toggle the HOSTS file usage by Windows (enabled/disabled).
Third party HOSTS files
* An online database of the hpHosts file can now be found at:
Further information on the HOSTS file, how to use it, and what it can do for you, can be found at;
What is the HOSTS file?
Blocking Unwanted Parasites with a Hosts File
HOSTS File: Wholesale blocking
The HOSTS file, and what it can do for you
Protecting the HOSTS file
NetBIOS Name Resolution Using DNS and the HOSTS File
Problems using Internet Explorer with an incorrect HOSTS file
Differences between the HOSTS and LMHOSTS files in Windows NT
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